Mellow. Chill. Easy Like Sunday Morning. Calm. Zen. It’s well established that I love the peaceful, light and simple. And I love food.
Getting dressed up for a special dinner is incredibly lovely—and I can transform easily—but my comfort level is somewhere between margaritas, tacos and a BIG bowl of soup. I prefer an outdoor patio when I head out to dinner. I think of my favorite burger joint as “a dive” instead of a homespun restaurant (even though it’s totally homey). A breakfast picnic table works for me, and a piping hot cup of coffee works well almost anywhere. Even on a rocking boat as long as the seas don’t get too high!
Frosty, heavy glass mugs make beer look delicious. Red solo cups are friendly. Chilled tequila—no ice—in a small glass. A Bloody Mary tastes the same inside or out. It’s all good! It’s what you like and how you like it. A whole series of movies on the theme Shaken not Stirred wasn’t made for nothin’.
Saying the shortened version Guac instead of Guacamole, is almost religious. Who doesn’t worship the Guac Gods, Haas avocados, nourishing our healthy bods!
“Hey! How would you like to go get some guac and chips at my favorite dive?”
Casually speaking takes things down a notch. And it’s acceptable in the right setting. I save “fancy” for an office environment, business calls and fine dining celebrations, and my jean shorts for the local spots. Shoot. I live in Jimmy Buffet territory where Hawaiian shirts are still trendy.
One of the things I love about travel is discovering new kinds of food. When I go on vacations I always ask the locals what their favorite restaurants are. It’s served me well, too. They usually have a list of their Top 5. I can almost count on it. Then, I’ll watch them while they tell me, and I know the one I’m heading to when I see their eyes light up!
Speaking of favorites, I like table wine in France and quality bourbon in a wide rim top tumbler. You can smell and taste the bourbon better that way in tiny waves of loveliness.
Nice tableware is beautiful and linen special, but I can eat dinner from a red plastic basket with a paper liner—no problem. Either one works with the right company and quality fresh ingredients.
I’m also well schooled on which wine glasses go with each type of wine, but they all taste the same to me—whichever glass they’re served in. 🙂
Some people say they eat to live; I admit that I live to eat! When I went out West and requested an In-N-Out Burger, I got a big, surprised stare by my California hostess. But I held my ground. It’s just one meal out of 15. Gotta try it! Yes, I traveled across the country to see YOU, but I would love a taste of these burgers while I’m in, out and about. Point me in the direction of this perfection!
We have Shake Shack here in Florida and their “protein style” lettuce wrap burgers are a real treat. I also love a gluten free Ruth’s Chris burger belly up at the bar—at a slim hardwood table and a leather bar stool any day of the week.
Pick-up some gluten-free pastrami or ham sandwiches from the local Italian Deli and I’m good for 8 hours! There’s nothing like a sub with all the fixings. Or a “salad sub” if you don’t want the gluten free bread. Mellow Mushroom in Delray Beach has just the right kind of gluten free pizza when you want a quick bite. Topped with spinach and chicken, it pushes all the right buttons.
The manager Ray, and Emily our smart, sweet waitress, were super kind and welcoming and kept me GF safe with little fuss. I learned that all of Mellow Mushroom’s produce is fresh daily, and that they have a separate oven, prep station, and fridge just for the gluten free food! To top it off, they’re all FSU fans. I’m all about that with their big screens and banners celebrating my alma mater and fit right into this “mellow” place.
Even though my celiac diagnosis once made me afraid to eat, eating gluten free has led to me to discover a love for food… especially if there’s someone to share it with.
And while I love to experiment with new flavors, textures and experiences, I’m not a foodie, nor am I connoisseur. I almost prefer not to eat, than eat alone. That’s gotta be the Italian heritage in me.
I heard a story once about how an Italian astronaut on the International Space Station always preferred to eat his meal together with his crew. Even though there was no set meal regimen and they were eating from packages, it just made him happy to be together during mealtime. Bon Appetit to that! “Friends make me happy” as my good friend always says. I get it.
A dive is alive
It’s not stuffy or stiff
You can still have great manners
As you let yourself drift
Instantly your spirits lift
The atmosphere is loose, a lovely gift
Emulating a school lunch Sloppy Joe
Memories of tastes, friends that make you glow
Laid back slow, the music flows
Maybe take your pup in tow
It’s cool as a refreshing summer dip
Into a chill space you slip
Smooth like a rocket
“A dive space ship”
Guac and chips
Burger no bun fun
Mellow, homespun won!!
Some of life’s finest moments are at our favorite burger joints, or traveling and finding little hideaways like the Rusty Gull in Vancouver BC. It doesn’t matter where you are, or even if more than one napkin is required. Big things can happen in the smallest places. Go slow and relish it. Huge deals have been made under paper lanterns. 🏮🏮🏮